The 7th Africa Think Tank Summit hosted by The African Capacity Building Foundation, ACBF, African Union’s Specialized Agency for Capacity Development, commenced today.
A press release by ACBF’s Senior Communication Officer, Ntsiuoa Sekete, stated that the virtual Summit which will end tomorrow November 19, is being held under the theme, “Implementing the African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA, Agreement: Assessing Country Readiness and Implications for Capacity-Building.”
The Summit is meant to provide a platform for African Think Tanks and other key stakeholders to engage in a high-level deliberation on the most effective ways of addressing capacity challenges of member states in a bid to enhance country readiness and accelerate implementation of the AfCFTA, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
ACBF’s Executive Secretary, Prof. Emmanuel Nnadozie, said that the Summit will examine the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for making the AfCFTA a reality; assess country readiness in the implementation of the AfCFTA; identify and examine key capacity challenges facing countries and other key institutions involved in driving the continental free trade agenda.
He said, “The Summit provides a perfect opportunity for all players to determine the most effective ways of addressing institutional and human capacity challenges facing the implementation of the AfCFTA. Having played a key role in establishment of the majority of the foremost Think Tanks across the continent, we at ACBF believe that Think Tanks have a critical role to play in making the AfCFTA a reality. Therefore, our goal is to provide the opportunity for a better understanding of the role of Think Tanks and how they can effectively support African countries in addressing AfCFTA-related challenges and in maximizing the benefits of intra-Africa trade.”
The 2020 Think-Tank Summit is expected to generate partnerships and coordination mechanisms that will enhance capacity development programming and overall efforts in advancing country readiness in implementing and benefiting from the AfCFTA.
The Summit has attracted experts and representatives from at least 45 African Countries, and partner institutions such as the Afreximbank, African Development Bank, and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, to mention a few.